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World shares near new peak on stimulus hopes, oil gains

por Angelika Sebastian (2021-06-19)


By Herbert Lash

NEW YORK, Feb 5 (Reuters) - - A gauge of global equity markets approached a record high on Friday on investor expectations of further stimulus from Washington and economic revival hopes that also lifted crude oil prices to nearly $60 a barrel.

Longer-term U.S.
Treasury yields rose after a Labor Department report showed U.S. jobs rebounded less than forecast in January, bolstering hopes Congress will approve President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package.

The closely watched employment report showed job losses in December and November were deeper than initially thought, underscoring the need for additional relief money.

Gold rose as the dollar retreated slightly and investors continued to bank on the greenback with rising Treasury yields.

Tom Hayes, chairman and managing member at hedge fund Great Hill Capital LLC in New York, said the market was looking through the short-term disappointment in the employment report.

"It's very hard to get too pessimistic about downward revisions when you have three tailwinds at your back, namely the stimulus, the vaccinations and (declining infection) cases and earnings," Hayes said.

Job losses are still concentrated in retail, leisure and hospitality and health care, particularly in health care and nursing homes, "so this is all COVID-related issues," he said.

As more people get vaccinated, jobs will come back, which is driving investor sentiment, Hayes said.

MSCI's benchmark for global equity markets rose 0.49% to 670.05, less than 1 point from a record high set in January.

It was the index's fifth consecutive day of gains.

The Nasdaq and S&P 500 hit new highs as stronger-than-expected corporate results in the fourth quarter and companies on track to post earnings growth for the first quarter instead of a decline have boosted sentiment.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.34%, the S&P 500 gained 0.29% and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.16%.

Europe's broad FTSEurofirst 300 index dropped 0.08% to 1,575.37.

Despite trending lower against the euro and Japanese yen, the dollar headed for its best weekly gain in three months.

The U.S. dollar index stood near a two-month high, up 1.1% so far this week.

The dollar index fell 0.426%, with the euro up 0.52% to $1.2024. The yen strengthened 0.07% versus the greenback at 105.47 per dollar.

Oil hit its highest level in a year, above $59 a barrel, supported by hopes of a quicker economic revival and 올레벳 supply curbs by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its producer allies.

Brent crude futures rose $0.83 to $59.67 a barrel.

U.S. crude futures gained $0.86 to $57.09 a barrel.

Government bond investors expect an uptick in inflation after the unemployment report. Breakeven rates on 10-year Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities (TIPS), which measure average annual inflation expectations for the coming decade, have jumped to 2.19%, the highest level since mid-2018.

The 10-year U.S.

Treasury note rose about 1 basis point to 1.1584%, after briefly rising to the highest yield since March.

The net read from the unemployment report is that it supports a steeper yield curve, said Steven Ricchiuto, U.S. chief economist at Mizuho Securities USA LLC in New York.

"The big thing is the curve," he said.

Bond yields rose in Europe as well, with Germany's 30-year government bond yield climbing back into positive territory for the first time since September.

MSCI's gauge of Asian shares outside Japan rose 0.4% while Japan's Nikkei rallied 1.5%.

(Additional reporting by Imani Moise; editing by Larry King, Kevin Liffey and Dan Grebler For Reuters Live Markets blog on European and UK stock markets, please click on:)

ISSN: 1980-5861